Ever since COVID-19 hit the world, it has been some tough months for the aviation industry. But, the supersonic venture, Boom Technology is not giving up yet. Instead, it is bringing in exciting hopes of supersonic travel with its new jet.
Boom Supersonics finally launched its Boom Supersonic XB-1 demonstrator aircraft on Wednesday. It is the firm’s first-ever supersonic aeroplane. Boom, notably, worked on the development of the XB-1 jet for six years. But, like all other launch events in the pandemic, Boom also had to contend with an online-only event.
Sneak Peek into the specs of XB-1 Boom Supersonic
Boom has designed the XB-1 N990XB demonstrator jet to test its technology ahead of the full-size civilian airliner. Boom will use the plane to test various components and design needs for the larger
XB-1 Boom Supersonic demonstrator is a 71-feet long aircraft. It sports a carbon-composite frame for increased heat-resistance. Moreover, it also features a delta wing shake optimized for greater efficiency. It is powered by a trio of General Electric J85-15 engines. Reports claim that the trio can provide a thrust of up to 12,000 pounds.
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The original J85 warhorse engine has powered aircrafts including the likes of T-38 Talon training plane since the 1950s. But, it has been further tweaked to improve its efficiency for the XB-1. Additionally, their efficiency is also crucial for the company’s carbon-neutral test program.
Furthermore, Boom Supersonic has also been looking for ways to come down on costs and production periods. Thus, it has also made certain changes to its manufacturing methods. The supersonic plane manufacturer has also taken on to 3D printing for the purpose.
It now uses 3D printing for prototyping as well as to make parts for the aircraft. It had partnered with Stratasys and Velo 3D to produce prototypes and also tooling for the process. Additionally, XB-1 features a high-resolution video camera to help pilots navigate tricky landings.
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All the innovations we talked about in the XB-1 demonstrator aircraft are commendable. But, experts assert that the real work has only begun with the launch. Next step would be to ensure that the aircraft is ready for test flights in the Mojave Desert by next year.
Engadget also quoted company Founder, Blake Scholl hopeful with the launch of the demonstrator. Scholl said, “XB-1 is an important milestone towards the development of our commercial liner, Overture.”
The report also added that Boom is aiming to build its first manufacturing facility by 2022. It also aims to complete the manufacturing of its first Overture aircraft by 2025. If things indeed go as per company’s plans, Boom will run its first passenger flight by 2029.